I admit, I’ve really been sucking at this whole blogging thing. In an effort to get back on track, I’m going back several weeks in my photo inventory to bring you the Vaucluse House. I’m pretty sure it was the sheer quantity of photos I took and then needed to process that has caused me to put this off for so long! My fascination with Australian history has urged me on, however.
The Vaucluse House is one of the original manor houses in Sydney. It began life as a small, stone cottage in 1803, built for Sir Henry Brown Hayes. In 1827, William Charles Wentworth purchased the property.
Wentworth was born in Australia in 1790, shortly after his mother who was convicted of theft arrived in Sydney aboard the Neptune. His father, who escaped conviction for highway robbery in England, also traveled on the same ship. While the senior Wentworth went on to become a prominent and wealthy member of the colony, the family was never accepted into the gentry because of their convict past.
Vaucluse House was built for Wentworth’s wife, Sarah Cox, whose parents also arrived aboard a convict ship. She kept a tight ship herself of the estate and their family. Even with the big fancy house and lots of money, she, too, suffered isolation because of their past. And, oh, apparently two of their children were born before she and Wentworth actually got married.
As I strolled through the rooms, they became peopled by my imagination. I find it fascinating to think of the individuals who sat in these chairs, and the servants who leaned in to offer plates of food, while attempting to be invisible.
I kept thinking of Downton Abbey as I walked through this grand house, especially when in the domains of the servants. I find them more interesting. Just imagine the stories that were witnessed by this majestic stove!
I do have a zillion more pics, some of questionable quality. I’ve put them over on Flickr if you want to continue wandering the halls and gardens of this exquisite estate. Click here to see them:)